GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP)–Big Brothers Big Sisters of America has named Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County (BBBSFC) as Small Agency of the Year.

The award was announced at the 2022 Bigger Together Celebration in Indianapolis.

The national organization cited BBBSFC’s mentor support initiatives. One program connects volunteer mentors with trainers and clinicians from the community to provide professional support. Another mentoring initiative is a leadership training program that uses high school students as mentors for younger students that addresses many different social and emotional development stages for both older and younger youth.

“The aim of this initiative is to provide mentors and staff with additional tools to support and empower young people in times of trauma and healing. We want to create safe and inclusive spaces to have hard conversations and allow folks to connect with peers who are facing similar challenges. We are proud to lead in this collective way and share this model throughout the BBBS Federation” said Executive Director Jennifer Webster.

“It is my absolute pleasure to celebrate our agencies across the nation that have shown extraordinary dedication to not only their organization, but to supporting their local communities, as well,” says Artis Stevens, President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. “We thank Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County for their continued power in mentorship, dedication and vigorous impact they have on their community.

BBBSFC was also recognized for their involvement in creating the “Light up the Fairgrounds” winter holiday lighting display event in partnership with two other local nonprofits and a local radio station.